As we enter the fourth and final stretch of 2018, there’s a lot of activity going on in our business.  As many of you know, I have the honor and opportunity to serve in the capacity of President of the Mississippi REALTORS in 2019.  So much of the planning and preparation for that comes in the months and years prior to assuming the role.  Needless to say, it’s been a growing experience, and my hope is that my service will help to improve the lives of our members and the clients and communities we serve.

As part of that duty, I’ve had the opportunity to participate in various leadership training sessions to prepare me for the role.  This past August, I joined incoming state and local presidents in Chicago for the National Association of REALTORS’ Leadership Summit.  We were challenged to develop “our story” to share with others regarding what this business means to us, and to use it to inspire others to remain committed to the ethical ideals of being a REALTOR.  I like to think of it in terms of a personal testimony of sorts.

The truth is there are a variety of stories that have developed over the years that help us relate to our clients and customers.  For example, the story of how I lost money one time on a home I purchased and had to bring a check to closing to cover the difference, in order to help empathize with clients in similar circumstances.  Or the story of my first home purchase and my overwhelming, but illogical, feelings of regret and fear that set in once I’d signed the contract - to help first buyers get past the stereotypical “buyer’s remorse” after contracting a home for purchase.

Beyond this, though, is an overriding story for why I am so passionately committed to this industry and what it represents.  In our last staff meeting of September, our entire team spent some time sharing and developing our individual “stories” about what drew us to the business.  My personal challenge to each of them, and to myself, is to consider what it is that we actually do for people on a daily basis.  For me, the reason goes back to my childhood upbringing and the blessing that owning property can mean for a family.

Real estate was an integral part of my family’s story.  My dad was the youngest of ten children born in the second quarter of the 20th century in rural Perry County.  They were born into extreme poverty, and every child had to take part in providing for the needs of the family.  As a result, the opportunity for higher education was not available to them.  In fact, my dad and only a few of his other siblings graduated high school or earned their equivalency certificate, because the need to work in order to feed themselves was so great.  The remainder of my aunts and uncles never completed formal schooling.   The necessity of providing for their basic needs required a strong work ethic that developed amongst the ten siblings.  It also birthed the dream of escaping their circumstances.  Growing up with very little instilled in them a sense of thriftiness and investing.  Over time they begin investing in land, and building homes, and by the measure of their beginnings, by-and-large, were extremely successful.  Real estate literally became the rope that they used to pull themselves out of poverty!  In the process, they changed the trajectory of our entire family.  My cousins and I were afforded much better opportunities than my dad and his siblings had when they were young.  In one generation, the combination of hard work, responsible decisions, and real estate investing created a foundation that allowed my brother, sister, and me to pursue careers and dreams that my dad could never attain.  I am convinced that there is no other land on earth, where a family like theirs – with seemingly so little opportunity – could have achieved so much in a single generation.  Real estate was a huge part of that story, and I am so very thankful for it!

So, you see, when I look at what we do, I don’t see it as a business.  I see it as a mission to change the lives of people for the better by extending the opportunity to own and invest in real estate to any who can responsibly enjoy it.  It’s not only my “why,” but it’s the collective “why” for all of us at The All-Star Team, REALTORS.  We are honored and thankful to be in a position to bring the benefits of property ownership to people every single day.

Adam & Team